My own experiences of domestic and family violence have given me a profound insight into how the direct harm of this violence can be compounded by later interventions, such as the removal of children from their communities. . . .
While many within government agencies may believe that sharing information about clients at risk may help to prevent domestic and family violence, this poses its own risks. In order to gain the trust of Aboriginal women and their families, maintaining and communicating respect for privacy are of fundamental importance. Without that trust, many domestic and family violence offences will go unreported. It is essential too that a WDVCAS operates as an autonomous women’s service of high integrity and not just as a handmaid to the police and other government agencies. . . .
High ethical standards, an understanding of our history, and sensitivity to our cultural protocols are profoundly important when working with Aboriginal women and gaining their trust; as is an awareness of their experience of repeated betrayals by white authorities. Closing the gap will first require breaking down problematic attitudes that currently discourage our women from engaging with services that could otherwise support positive changes in their family lives. . . .
As the recent protests have made clear, it is time the Australian Government explored other criminal justice models, such as the women’s police stations in South America and the less punitive Scandinavian prison systems which focus on restorative justice, for alternatives which do not destroy Aboriginal communities. To win the trust of Aboriginal women, services must acknowledge the wrongs of the past and show a commitment not to repeat them.
A pioneering feminist trying to change things from the inside, Elizabeth Reid was subjected to the very behaviour she was fighting against — including an unwanted sexual advance from the governor-general.
UK — Lincoln, England. On October 4, 2020, police raided the home of Zoe Watts (formerly Kyle Ashley Jake Watts), equalities officer for Lincolnshire Police UNISON, and former police community support officer (PCSO) with the Bracebridge Lowfields Community Police.
The arrest marks the second time in two years that a transgender equalities officer has been taken into custody on weapons charges.
Watts has a YouTube channel called Survival Mistakes, which include videos giving such tips as how to create shotgun shell survival kits and tampon fire rockets. In one video, Watts makes a baseball bat covered in glass, to smash watermelons with masks of famous faces on them, including feminist scholar Germaine Greer (author of The Female Eunuch).
Children can’t fully understand the lifelong repercussions of taking hormone blockers at an early age and thus can’t consent to the treatment, the lawyer for two women suing the UK’s only NHS-run youth gender clinic has claimed.
Transitioning youth who take hormone blockers have a “very high likelihood” of moving on to cross-sex hormones, which can cause “irreversible changes” such as “loss of fertility and sexual function, and decreased bone density,” Jeremy Hyam QC told the High Court on Wednesday, arguing that young people who begin the treatment are incapable of fully understanding the permanent damage they are doing to their bodies and thus cannot truly give “informed consent.”
With the number of children identifying as transgender having soared over the past decade, this case could have major repercussions for the growth industry of youth gender clinics. Earlier this year, the NHS announced an independent review of puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones, and has since commissioned detailed clinical guidelines for how children are to be evaluated prior to transitioning.
World Rugby’s decision to prevent transgender women from competing at the highest levels of the women’s game has provoked a mixed reaction.
The move has been criticised by LGBT charity Stonewall, while some women’s rights and gay rights campaigners have welcomed the decision.
Bev Jackson, co-founder of the LGB Alliance, said the organisation “applauds World Rugby for conducting a thorough, evidence-based study and making a decision on that basis to protect safety in women’s rugby. We are very pleased that they resisted political pressure and kept to scientific facts. Many lesbians play this sport and they are enormously relieved.”She added that “judging by the reactions we have received, a great many LGB people and indeed many trans people think this was the right decision”.Dr Nicola Williams, director of Fair Play For Women, said: “World Rugby have taken a transparent and evidence-based approach and we welcome their decision to prioritise safety and fairness for elite female players.
Trans women will not be permitted to play elite women’s rugby for the foreseeable future because of “significant” safety concerns, World Rugby has stated after releasing new guidelines for transgender players.
In a statement explaining its decision, World Rugby said that after months of research and examining the latest scientific research it had “concluded that safety and fairness cannot presently be assured for women competing against trans women in contact rugby”.
In a document explaining its decision published on Friday, World Rugby said that “It is known that biological males (whose puberty and development is influenced by androgens/testosterone) are stronger by 25% to 50%, are 30% more powerful, 40% heavier, and about 15% faster than biological females.
“That combination of mass, strength, power and speed means that in a direct physical contest, ciswomen in all these domains will be at significant risk of injury.”
“Given the best available evidence for the effects of testosterone reduction on these physical attributes for transgender women, it was concluded that safety and fairness cannot presently be assured for women competing against trans women in contact rugby,” it said.
“Women have fought for decades to have access to similar resources (as male sport), similar media coverage, pay parity in professional sports — and now that we are actually starting to gain some ground, that’s all being put at risk,” said Katherine Deves, the Sydney-based spokeswoman for a new group Save Women’s Sport Australasia.
Last week, the activist lobby Pride in Sport announced eight sports — including AFL, hockey, netball, rugby, tennis and touch football — had adopted trans-inclusion policies inspired by a contentious 2019 guideline from federal government agencies Sport Australia and the Australian Human Rights Commission.
Pride in Sport, a fee-earning arm of ACON which operates as a national trans activist lobby and “inclusive” training provider, said 14 other sports had promised to come up with similar policies.
Ms Deves said ACON and its partner sports had not given due weight to research concluding that trans competitors who have been through male puberty retain almost all their advantage in lean body mass, muscle area and strength, even if they take drugs to suppress their testosterone in line with 2015 IOC rules.
COVID-19 has left women, more than men, economically disadvantaged through unemployment, underemployment, lowered incomes, less secure work, greater household and family demands, and increased risk of domestic violence.But you’re unlikely to read about it in next week’s budget.Instead you’re likely to read about new (male dominated) construction projects and more work in the electricity and gas industries. And tax cuts, which predominantly benefit higher earners and so are of less use to females.
Gender responsive budgeting could make a substantial contribution, documenting the extent to which investment in childcare and other services is more likely to create jobs, and jobs for women, than spending on construction.
While the current government appears uninterested, the tide is turning.
Almost half of the 37 countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development now have some form of gender budgeting. The former head of the International Monetary Fund has declared it good budgeting.
At a recent gathering, a daughter’s friend told us, “I’m probably trans because I don’t like female puberty.” This instantly got my attention, because I have known this child for years, and I never saw any indication of her being trans. I innocently asked her why she would say that. Was it a joke, perhaps? She replied, “I don’t like my boobs growing, and Reddit says I’m probably trans.” That night, I tracked down these Reddit exchanges, and my jaw dropped when I saw how many people and organizations were heavily pushing the possibility of her being trans. But perhaps I shouldn’t have been surprised, given the way such attitudes have gone mainstream. This includes the pediatrician mom whose recent opinion piece for the New York Times was titled What I Learned as the Parent of a Transgender Child. For kids Googling this subject, the overall effect is the equivalent of one big glitter bomb going off on their screen.
I write all this as a 47-year-old transgender man who transitioned five years ago. I’m also a parent to three teenagers.
During my own transition, I had seven surgeries. I also had a massive pulmonary embolism, a helicopter life-flight ride, an emergency ambulance ride, a stress-induced heart attack, sepsis, a 17-month recurring infection due to using the wrong skin during a (failed) phalloplasty, 16 rounds of antibiotics, three weeks of daily IV antibiotics, the loss of all my hair, (only partially successful) arm reconstructive surgery, permanent lung and heart damage, a cut bladder, insomnia-induced hallucinations—oh and frequent loss of consciousness due to pain from the hair on the inside of my urethra. All this led to a form of PTSD that made me a prisoner in my apartment for a year. Between me and my insurance company, medical expenses exceeded $900,000.
Children who claim to be trans typically are receiving such drugs at a pivotal time in the development of brains and bones. They’ve become a generation of guinea pigs, to answer such questions as: What will happen to a biological boy who takes sex hormones associated with the opposite sex (or vice versa), and grows up without the benefit of natural puberty? What happens to a male body on estrogen over the long term? No one knows.
Kids who are suicidal before their transition will likely continue to be suicidal, and the most intense ideation often comes years after transitioning. (Transgender folks themselves sometimes speak anecdotally of a seven-to-10-year trans suicide “itch” observed within the community.)